Advanced Metering Infrastructure 2020 Blog

Advanced Metering Infrastructure 2020 event

Keep up to date with the latest developments on the Advanced Metering Infrastructure 2020 virtual conference run by Smart Grid Forums.

Case Study: ESO

Across Europe, DSOs are faced with looming regulatory deadlines for achieving 100% smart meter coverage. It is clear from the first generation roll out that developing a robust procurement strategy and working hand-in-hand with new partners is crucial if you are to ensure your AMI system is future proofed from a technological point of view. 

In order to effectively manage a disparate supplier base and overcome the uncertainty of being a first adopter of new metering, communications, and data storage technology, it’s imperative that utilities develop detailed functional specifications and establish a roadmap for continual collaboration with all stake holders involved in the implementation process. 

This week we caught up with Darius Žebrauskas, Smart Metering Infrastructure Expert at ESO, who will be presenting at the inaugural Advanced Metering Infrastructure 2020 virtual conference, to discuss their comprehensive methodology which preempts the challenges of public procurement.

Darius explained: “At Advanced Metering Infrastructure 2020, I will be discussing the gains and losses of introducing one of the latest country-wide rollouts of Smart Metering in Europe, detailing how we managed to make more than 10 market consultations, changed our decisions several times, drafted 500 pages of Technical Specification, published the Tender twice, and still attracted tens of vendors to the competition.

Our journey to Smart Metering takes us back to the year of 2012. When the first CBA for introducing AMI was conducted, we reached a negative result and introduced the AMR meters only for the C&I customers. After producing a successful pilot project in 2016-2017, ESO decided to try once again with a new CBA. Fortunately, we have found positive benefits not only for the DSO but for our customers too. Mainly driven by savings up to 5% on electricity bills for the consumers; by achieving the better competition for electricity supplier to offer better and more services; and by more accurate and efficient management of the grid. Therefore, we decided to launch the Smart Metering programme in 2018.

Over the two year period, we learned that being ambitious is not enough when you are only an adopter of the latest advancements in the metering world and you have one of the strictest Procurement Laws in the EU. Key aspects which we understood are being able to avoid the vendor lock-in, being future proof for introducing innovations on the grid and having interoperability between components. Fortunately, during previous years we had agreed on the investment with a national regulator for the Smart Metering Infrastructure, covering the Smart Meters, Communications infrastructure and the Information Systems to be deployed. Thus, due to close cooperation with the stakeholders and consultations of the potential vendors and DSOs, we were able to structure a strategy for the installation of approx. 1,2 million Smart Meters until 2023 for all of our customers having a higher consumption than 1000 kWh/year and all businesses.”

Darius will be speaking alongside other Heads of Smart Metering from across the globe, to reflect on the lessons learnt from critical parts of their smart meter implementation process. This will provide attendees with the information to ensure they avoid any costly integration mistakes and meet those stringent regulatory deadlines. The conference programme includes 15 utility case studies from DSOs in Europe, South Africa, South-East Asia, and America, as well as expert advice from specialist consultants and guidance from leading suppliers on the Technology Innovation Panel.